Fashion resources for bigger dudes?
November 1, 2020 9:34 AM   Subscribe

Used to pay lots of attention to how I dress but haven't for the past few years. Tired of bad fitting jeans and tshirts. Help!

I'm 40 years old and a bigger guy - 6'3 and 300 pounds. I want to improve my wardrobe game and have no idea where to start.

Background: I used to be much more into how I dressed. I also used to be skinner. Grew up in the punk and hardcore scene and did combat boots/Chuck Taylors/tattoos/studded belts/etc. into my mid twenties, then moved into more toned down fashion - unique tshirts, dress shirts, fitted jeans, etc.

I've put on a lot of weight in the past few years; I also started working from home a few years ago which meant paying a lot less attention to clothes. Apart from some nice outfits for weddings/events and meeting with clients in white collar work settings, I really didn't pay attention to the clothes I bought. Then I had a kid and got super-busy with parent stuff on top of that.

These days I mostly wear Target jeans, cheap black sneakers and old tshirts and I want to improve my fashion game. I tried a personal shopper a few months ago at a department store but they had no idea what to do with a big and tall-ish customer - was pretty awkward and crappy.

With that said, I'm trying to find brands, stores, Instagram feeds, YouTube channels, sites, etc. for clothing ideas without looking like I'm having a midlife crisis or like a shlub.

Any recommendations?
posted by huskerdont to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (8 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I am 6’4” and 290 with a long torso; I know your struggle.

This is exactly the situation Indochino is for.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 10:29 AM on November 1, 2020

What kinds of stuff are you looking for? Do you want mostly better jeans and sweaters? Chinos? Button-front shirts? Are you looking for nicer sneakers, loafers, lace-up shoes or some kind of arty thing? Do you like colors? Do you like prints? Do you like stripes?

Do you like arty clothes or are you looking more to dress well but blend in?

Do you like the feeling of tighter clothes or do you like looser clothes? (This has nothing to do with size - if you like tighter clothes, you should wear tighter clothes.)

Do you carry your weight fairly evenly, mostly in your stomach, in your stomach and chest? Do you feel like you have long legs for your height? A long torso for your height? When you get a shirt, is it easy for you to find one with long enough sleeves? When you buy pants in your size/height, is it easy for you to find the right inseam?

And what kind of price range are you looking at?

Those are all going to change the things one would recommend.

A universal recommendation, for starters (I am a short fat transmasculine person who wears men's clothes and my partner is about your size, so I pay a lot of attention to where to get things): Structured but not stiff fabrics, structured but not stiff collars. Oxford cloth, twills, dobbies, textured weaves, more robust cotton or wool knits.

There are a lot of glossy/thin/fine fabrics out there, a lot of stiff dress collars on shirts that should not have stiff collars, a lot of drapey sweaters in thin, fine knits. Unless you really, really have your own style, these are not for the tall or the fat - you want clothes with presence, because you have presence.
posted by Frowner at 10:47 AM on November 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

I'm in a similar situation (including the weight gain) and I've been pleasantly surprised by StitchFix. You tell them what kinds of things you like, they send 5 options, you pick which ones to buy, and then you give feedback for next time. You can also choose to use the same shopper next time or request a new one. My first box was just OK but the second one (by the same stylist, based on my feedback) was bang-on for my style, and they managed to find a pair of pants that fit better than any pants I've worn in like four years. I was skeptical but I'm definitely going to keep using them now, at least to build up a solid base of basically fashionable staples I can add to.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:49 AM on November 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

TheBigFashionGuy, aka Michael-Anthony is, imo, THE most stylish plus size male influencer. If his dapper style isn't quite what you're looking for, he founded Men of Size, a men's plus-size style blog that features other looks.

Taking hints from him and others : Shoes, Hats, and Jackets are your absolutely must-haves for looking put together. Asos is a super popular UK (with an online US presence) fashion retailer that is a godsend to plus size women and men. It gears more towards a younger and more sporty crowd, but its a great place to get staples and accessories.
posted by FirstMateKate at 10:50 AM on November 1, 2020 [2 favorites]

I'm a bit smaller than you, but sport coats have been my magic bullet for looking way more put together than I actually am, even with scrappy, threadbare, off-the-shelf clothes beneath. In the before times, Nordstrom Rack and Burlington Coat Factory were both good sources for heavily discounted and reasonably good items, along with hundreds of crappy ones. I'm not sure how that works today. (If you choose to go that route, don't buy anything that doesn't fit perfectly, aside from the length of the sleeves and possibly reducing the fabric in the mid-section at the back, which can be easily tailored.) Best of luck!
posted by eotvos at 11:10 AM on November 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

Get you aBig Bud Press jumpsuit. They have a great size guide and go up to 5X.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 12:08 PM on November 1, 2020

For shirts, Stantt. Click on the "Find Your Perfect Size" button in the upper right.

For pants, get a couple of pairs of non-jeans, such as khakis/chinos. After wearing jeans forever, any non-jeans feel like dress pants, but go ahead and get the dirty, wipe your hands on them. In a couple of weeks, you'll get used to them. I like dressier Carhartt's with a cell phone pocket such as their Rigby.

Haven't tried Untuckit, but those might suit.
posted by at at 7:29 PM on November 1, 2020

I follow and enjoy ExtraExtraStyle aka Ryan Dziadul
posted by girlalex at 11:54 PM on November 2, 2020

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